The work done over the last number of years to extend the runway safety areas at Benny Benson State Airport in Kodiak has been recognized for its safety record. The announcement was made last week by the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities.
Engineering News-Record Northwest presented the 2016 Excellence in Safety Award to Kiewit Infrastructure West. The company, with an office in Anchorage, oversaw the project that extended two runway safety areas 600 ft. into Chiniak Bay by constructing an adjacent rock breakwater, new service roads and taxiway, and by installing an engineered concrete material arresting system. That last item is designed to stop planes from going off the end of the runway in the event of ice or other emergency.
Kiewit worked in collaboration with the Alaska DOT, Kodiak Airport, Federal Aviation Administration, and U.S. Coast Guard on the project. Its local subcontractors included Belarde Custom Concrete and Brechan Enterprises.
One of the ENR Best Projects judges noted the logistics of doing construction work on the runways of an active airport as one of the challenges the project overcame to maintain a perfect safety record. The others included the weather, of course, as well as operations at two separate quarries, one here in Kodiak, and one in Wrangell, to secure the needed rock.
All told, the project had more than 100,000 worker hours and zero incidents reportable to OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.